Mobile financial services, financial inclusion, and development: A systematic review of academic literature

Minjin Kim, Hanah Zoo, Heejin Lee, Juhee Kang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Citations (Scopus)


With the flagship success of m-Pesa, financial services via mobile devices have become an important tool to facilitate the financial inclusion of the previously unbanked population in developing countries. Attempts to provide a landscape of academic research findings at the intersection of mobile financial services, financial inclusion, and development have been rather scant. To determine the key issues and gaps in the current academic research, this study conducts a systematic review of 54 academic research papers vis-à-vis the nexus of mobile financial services, financial inclusion, and development. The results show that the extant literature addresses three major clusters of topics: delivery, environmental factors, and the impact of mobile financial services. Still in the nascent stage of research, the topics covered in the literature indicate a bias towards institutional and individual preconditions for the implementation of mobile financial services, rather than actual supply and demand by users, and its impact on society. The choice of research methods also shows limited variety and depth. This study contributes towards understanding the existing research on mobile financial services for financial inclusion in developing countries and finding research gaps for future study.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere12044
JournalElectronic Journal of Information Systems in Developing Countries
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Sep


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Information Systems

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